The Best Hedge Against a Currency is Another Currency – Not Gold

Gold bugs are keen on posing the likely inflationary collapse of a currency as the main reason to invest in Gold.  Only a few months ago many were still predicting the likely collapse in the Dollar, now investors in half of the emerging economies and Russia and dumping everything to buy safe dollar assets.

Of you fear a currency is overvalued you buy another currency.  Its only rational to invest in Gold (or crypto currencies) if you think all currencies are overvalued.  Only likely to be the case if most of the world currencies pursue a debt monetarisation strategy, which most central banks are banned from doing anyway.

Its a theoretical but very unlikely possibility.  It is possible that another global collapse of asset prices and unpayable debts will force creation of helicopter money to bail out banks, but this would not be new money that circulates, rather it simply readjusts the overall price level to that it was before the collapse in asset prices, spending would continue as it was before, it would not be inflationary.  The Bank bailouts after 2007 were hardly inflationary were they.

If anyone can think of a realistic scenario where all currencies would hyperinflate at once then please add it in the comments, if not then there is not a rational case for a gold or crypto currency hedge.  Buy land, buy frozen concentrated orange juice buy anything, but don’t buy gold whose real asset value will always simply track the real demand fro it in manufacturing and so will be a bad cyclical hedge against global contagion.

You cant have a Robin Hood Ban on Windfarms

From the Yorkshire Post

EXPERTS ARE investigating whether centuries-old woodland linked to the legend of Robin Hood should be afforded protection from a controversial development.

Campaigners in the South Yorkshire villages of Norton, Campsall and Sutton have launched an official bid for Barnsdale Wood and neighbouring White Ley plantation, north-west of Doncaster, to be recognised as ‘ancient’.

It comes following an application to erect two wind turbines adjacent site, documented in literature as a stomping ground of the world’s most famous outlaw. Residents nearby claim the plans for ‘community’ turbines would create a blot on the landscape and building work which requires access through part of the woods would disrupt and damage natural habitats.

Natural England has begun delving into archive materials and analysing old maps to establish whether the area has been continuously wooded since 1600, with a decision expected early in the new year.

The only part of Barnsdle Forest with trees likely to be descendants of a medieval forest is Hampole Wood.

The only arguments about whether Robin Hoods was from Yorkshire or Notts or Derbyshire is misplaced.  Royal Forests did not respect county boundaries.

In the reign of Henry II (1154-1189), Richard I (1189-1199) and John (1199-1216), all of Nottinghamshire north and west of the Trent was subject to forest law.

In fact this area extended into Derbyshire as far as the River Derwent.

In fact Shoerwood Forest is likley to have extended all the way north to Barnsdale which marked its northern edge.  The earliest 15th century chronicles of Robin Hood mention Barnsdale.  And most importantly

Manwood’s “Forest Laws” records an occasion when King Richard the Lionhearted who was hunting in Sherwood chased a hart out of Sherwood and into Barnsdale. Because the king failed to kill the hart (stag) he made a proclamation at Tickhill, in Yorkshire and at divers other places that no person should kill, hurt, or chase the said hart, but that he might safely return into the forest again. The hart was afterwards called, “a hart royally proclaimed.”

So it is likley that Barnsdale Forest and Sherwood Forest were near contiguous at that time with Tickhill roughly the border.

the whole area could be traversed in a day which is what King John did on the 9th September 1213 when he travelled from Rothwell which is seven miles north of Wakefield and ten miles north-west of Barnsdale to Nottingham probably on the King’s Great Way that connects London with York following the route of an older Celtic/Roman Road.

So the whole historic area of Sherwood and Barnsdale Forest probably extended all the way from  Nottingham to Rothwell.  So lets ban everything in this area.  There is no doubting that this might meet the definition of a landscape’heritage asset’ – but lets be reasonable this is a huge area only some part of which retain ancient woods or historic and legendary connotations – like the Robins Hood Wells for example, or else we might as well ban all development in West London because it features in the Paddington Books


Gladmans Have Lost the Winslow Battle But they Will Win the Winslow War

Why do developers keep fighting no hope actions trying to block neighbourhood plans when the legislation is very cler they can come forward in advance of local plans?  A good example is this weeks action by Gladmans in Winslow.  After all if a local plan is out of date through lack of a 5 year supply an appeal should succeed under NPPF Para 14 even if the Neighbourhood Plan was made the day before?

The reason I think is a rather bizarre recovered appeal decision also in Winslow where this was just the issue, a neighbourhood plan had just been made and the local plan withdrawn from examination from lack of a 5 year supply/  Pickles found this rather uncomfortable and made policy up as he went along.

 The Secretary of State r… considers that neighbourhood plans, once made part of the development plan, should be upheld as an effective meansto shape and direct development in the neighbourhood planning area in question. Paragraph 198 is clear that, where a planning application conflicts with a
neighbourhood plan that has been brought into force, planning permission should not normally be granted….

the Secretary of State places very substantial negative weight on the conflict between the appeal proposal and the Winslow Neighbourhood Plan even though its policies relevant to housing land supply are out of date in terms of Framework paragraph 49. He concludes that this and the other adverse impacts, together, would significantly and demonstrably outweigh the benefits when assessed against the policies in the Framework taken as a whole. He therefore concludes that there are no material circumstances that indicate the proposal should be determined other than in accordance with the development plan.

In how many other cases has Pickles given little weight to out of date local plans?  The weight given to material considerations is a matter for the decision maker but the word ‘together’ indicates that the development plan conflict was determinate, seemingly ignoring para 14 of the NPPF, and the fact tha para 198 needs to be read with Para 196 and 197.  What the Sos seems to be arguing is that the NPPF should be read as a whole, but where there is a neighbourhood plan forget all of that and just read para. 198.

This is a bad decision because it provides a perverse decision to slow down on local plans and use neighbourhood plans which don’t allocate enough land as a blocking mechanism rather than the ‘positive and proactive’ mechanism to increase land allocations they were meant to be.

As in other areas, such as Green Belt reviews and Windfarms, Pickles and Lewis seem to be undermining the NPPF and giving nods and winks to friendly local authorities on how to do so.

I am not arguing this site should be developed or allocated, but Pickles is playing silly games and deserves to lose this JR.